The Hawkesbury Environment Network has been given two federal government grants to fund Green Army projects for conservation work in the Hawkesbury region.
With $525 million budgeted over four years for projects across Australia, the Green Army is one of the government’s major environmental initiatives.
The program will provide Hawkesbury residents aged 17-24 with full-time employment and training on environmental conservation tasks which will increase their skills and qualifications in well-supervised and safe training environments.
Chairman John Street said he was excited to be able to combine conservation training for young people with the opportunity to give them experience in protecting bushland areas.
‘‘These projects will help raise community awareness of bushland connectivity, environmental weeds, people impacts on natural areas, conflicting land uses, threatened species and communities, indigenous cultural heritage, and holistic land management,’’ Mr Street said.
The two teams of nine people will have six Green Army sites which will expand and enhance existing local land and bushcare programs including the Hawkesbury Rainforest Network Landcare group, Yellomundee Aboriginal Bushcare Group, MacMahons Park Bushcare group, the University of Western Sydney’s Earthcare Centre, Redbank Creek Recovery Program and the Grose Vale-Kurrajong Cats Claw Creeper Project.
The teams will work with these groups to implement staged bush regeneration programs to enhance bushland, protect fauna habitat and preserve sites of cultural significance.
Designed by the Hawkesbury Environment Network, the projects will be implemented in partnership with the Local Land Services Regional Landcare Facilitator, Hawkesbury Council, Hawkesbury River County Council, Western Sydney Institute of TAFE, University of Western Sydney and bushcare groups.